THE BARREN FIG-TREE.
: New Testament Stories
In the morning, when Jesus had left Bethany and was coming towards
Jerusalem, He was hungry. Seeing a fig-tree afar off, covered with
leaves, He came to it, hoping to find some fruit on it. But the tree
was a young one, and had not yet commenced to bear fruit. And He found
thereon nothing but leaves. Then He said unto it, "Let no fruit grow
on thee henceforward for ever." And the fig-tree withered away and was
the roots. When the disciples saw it, they marvelled,
saying, "How soon the fig-tree is withered away!"
Jesus answered, and said unto them, "Verily I say unto you, if ye have
faith and doubt not, ye shall not only do as I have done to this
fig-tree, but, also, if ye shall say unto this mountain, 'Be thou
removed and be cast into the sea,' it shall be done. And all things,
whatsoever ye shall ask in prayer, believe that ye will receive them,
and ye shall have them. And when ye are praying, forgive any that have
injured you, that your Father also which is in heaven may forgive you
your trespasses against Him. But if ye do not forgive, neither will
your Father which is in heaven forgive your trespasses."
How strange it seems that Jesus, who was gentle and kind, should
pronounce a curse on this fig-tree, and cause it to wither away. Why
did He do so? Because He wished to impress upon His disciples the
terrible danger of unfruitfulness. If we are the disciples of Jesus,
we must bear good fruit; we must be loving, kind, and gentle, and try,
like Him, to be always doing good.